CAMPBELL SPORTS CENTER
New York, NY, United States, 2008-February 2013
PROGRAM: strength and conditioning spaces, offices for varsity sports, theater-style meeting rooms, a hospitality suite, and student-athlete study rooms.
CLIENT: Columbia University
BUILDING AREA (SQUARE): 48000 sf
Located on the corner of West 218th street and Broadway - the northernmost edge of Manhattan, where Broadway crosses with Tenth Avenue and the elevated tracks of the 1 subway line - the Campbell Sports Center forms a new gateway to the Baker Athletics Complex, the primary athletics facility for Columbia University's outdoor sports program.
The first new athletics building to be constructed on Columbia University's campus since the Marcellus Hartley Dodge Physical Fitness Center was built in the mid-1970s, the Campbell Sports Center is the new cornerstone of the revitalized Baker Athletics Complex and provides increased program space for the entire intercollegiate athletics program. The facility, which adds approximately 48,000 square foot of space, houses strength and conditioning spaces, offices for varsity sports, theater-style meeting rooms, a hospitality suite and student-athlete study rooms.
The Campbell Sports Center aims at serving the mind, the body and the mind/body for aspiring scholar-athletes. The design concept "points on the ground, lines in space" - like field play diagrams used for football, soccer, and baseball - develops from point foundations on the sloping site. Just as points and lines in diagrams yield the physical push and pull on the field, the building's elevations push and pull in space.
The building shapes an urban corner on Broadway and 218th street, then lifts up to form a portal, connecting the playing field with the streetscape. Extending over a stepped landscape, blue soffits heighten the openness of the urban scale portico to the Baker Athletics Complex. Terraces and external stairs, which serve as "lines in space," draw the field play onto and into the building and give views from the upper levels over the field and Manhattan.
Films on The Campbell Sports Center are available on Vimeo at the links below:
Campbell Sports Center
Campbell Sports Center, a Conversation with Steven Holl and Chris McVoy
"In this part of Manhattan with its nearby subway line elevated on stilts, there is further poetic justice in this insertion. A "rhyme" is established with the raised subway, which here, on 218 Street and Broadway, soars above everything else. Indeed, this project offers a moment of respite in the monotony of the housing stock and industrial dreariness."
-Yehuda Safran, The Plan
"Geography and its metaphors have figured largely in the work of New York architect Steven Holl, FAIA, and they converge superbly at the Campbell Sports Center, his new field house for Columbia University. The structure enables a notably lightweight steel tonnage for a building of this scale, evoking the picturesquely industrial iron and steel of the adjacent elevated subway tracks and Broadway Bridge, especially below the elevated wing that positions the hospitality suite and lounge high above the fields. […] The Campbell Sports Center is the straightforwardly beautiful and functional work of a veteran who is at last-some would say at long last-reaching the very top of his game."
-Thomas de Monchaux, Architect
"You need only jog around [The Campbell Sports Center] to see how neatly it negotiates a tangle of different transitions, from sloping residential streets to the rumbling subway trestle to the battleship-gray Broadway Bridge. ... The sports center reacts to this whole array of hard and liquid surfaces, to the neighborhood's old steel and iron landmarks, to the extravagance of the natural topography, and the deadness of cinderblock sheds. Nobody would call it contextual, and yet it's the only building around that deals with the surroundings in all their jagged complexity. ... Holl and McVoy have given Columbia's athletes an athletic structure that moves in various directions at once. It charges up the hill, twists toward the playing fields, and embraces the yard with outstretched arms. It's designed for users to move in, through, and around it."
-Justin Davidson, New York Magazine
"[Campbell Sports Center] is a tough, sophisticated and imaginative work of architecture for a devilish site. ... From many angles Campbell makes a striking sight in Inwood, its facade a mix of irregular blocks and voids, quasi-Cubist, crisscrossed by exterior stairways. All sorts of cuts, setbacks, overhangs and terraces animate the design. ... The arm echoes the subway trestle, but floating over a pitched lawn shaded by ginkgo trees instead of traffic. What results is a new, urban-scale civic space. ... The real art comes down to how the center interacts with what's around it: the raised subway tracks in one direction, the soccer field in another, the residential buildings in yet another and Broadway Bridge on the skyline. Inwood is a wonderful part of town. Campbell now adds to it."
-Michael Kimmelman, New York Times
MUNICIPAL ART SOCIETY 2013 MASTERWORKS AWARD FOR BEST NEW BUILDING, USA, 2013
2013 OUTSTANDING PROJECTS, GREATER NEW YORK CONSTRUCTION USER COUNCIL, USA, 2013
2014 ACEC NEW YORK PLATINUM AWARD, BUILDING/TECHNOLOGY SYSTEMS, USA, 2013
2014 BUILDING OF THE YEAR, THE ARCHITECT'S NEWSPAPER, USA, 2014
2014 AIA NY DESIGN HONOR AWARD, USA, 2014
2014 AIA NYS DESIGN MERIT AWARD, USA, 2014
2014 THE INTERNATIONAL ARCHITECTURE AWARD, THE CHICAGO ATHENAEUM MUSEUM OF ARCHITECTURE AND DESIGN, USA, 2014
– Steven Holl Architects
Steven Holl, Chris McVoy (design architect)
Chris McVoy (partner in charge)
Olaf Schmidt (associate in charge)
Marcus Carter, Christiane Deptolla, Peter Englaender, Runar Halldorsson, Jackie Luk, Filipe Taboada, Dimitra Tsachrelia, Ebbie Wisecarver (project team)
– Structuretone / Pavarini McGovern
– Robert Silman Associates
– ICOR Associates
– Hirani Engineering
curtain wall consultant
– W.J. Higgins
– Wald Studio
– The Clarient Group
– Cerami Associates
– Design 2147 Limited
– Davis Langdon
– Construction Specifications Inc.
– Weir Welding
– Architectural Wall Systems
– City Newark Glass